St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church has come under criticism recently for not using the pulpit to speak to (or protest) current political actions in our world. Lately, we have seen a rash of activity from the leadership of the empire that many consider racist, homophobic, xenophobic, bigoted, and morally bankrupt. Often these policies and behavior come from leaders who count themselves as good Christians or Jews or Muslims or other religious types.
If I have chosen not to directly confront Evangelical Conservatives or their arch opponents, Progressive Christians, who clutter our airwaves with sound bites and Twitter feeds and Facebook pages, it is because I believe there is a better way.
Kings come, and Kings go. Presidents are elected, and Presidents are defeated. Senators and Representatives and lobbyists and captains of industry all have their day in the sun, yet we cannot as Christians stake our future and wisdom on the opposition to any particular party or leader.
Our leader, the source of all wisdom, love, compassion, mercy, forgiveness (and many other good things) is Jesus Christ. We cannot be the voice of Progressive Christians or Evangelical Christians or Left Wing or Right Wing or Moderate Wing or even the voice for America.
Our voices, whether timid and feeble or strong and clear must remain rooted in the Gospel of Jesus Christ or we become nothing more than the religious arm of the current political party in protest. We must draw our strength from the teachings of Jesus, the iconoclastic and spiritual leader who started a lasting movement based upon love. This was his message, not the overthrow of the Roman Empire but the building up of the Kingdom God.
This is our message; love God with all that we have, and love of neighbor as we love ourselves.
Peace, Father Mark